Thursday, February 02, 2006

Sure ain't no average cup-a-noodle!

ramen1

Look at these noodles! They look so chewy, firm, and full of noodlicious goodness. This is not a slam on the Bay Area ramen joints, but I gotta say it - these noodles were vastly better than most of the noodles served around the Bay.

ramen3
The crazy thing is that this is a regular cup-a-noodle-style instant ramen from a road-side convenience store in Japan! No wonder I used to love these instant ramen thingies back in Japan as a child - it really is good!

ramen2

The bowl (yes, it really does come in a bowl and not in a cup) of ramen contains powdered soup, flavoring/sauce, freeze-dried green onions, and vacuum-packed char siu pork and bamboo shoot pickles. This one, in particular, was styled after the famed Sano-city ramen, known for its quality noodles since the water there is supposed to be crystal clear and deliciously smooth.

I would much rather eat this bowl of ramen again than eat at most of the ramen shops in the Bay Area. But really, this is not a slam on the Bay Area ramen shops. It is just a proclamation of how serious the noodle-worship culture in Japan is - even instant noodles have been reborn into a culinary achievement!

5 comments:

yamo said...

I wonder if I can pick that up at Nijiya or Mitsuwa....
Have you been to the ramen museum at Shin-Yokohama? The ramen in the bay area just makes me want to cry...

Robyn said...

I used to eat those crappy cup o noodles all the time as a kid! My family would buy them by the case. Sad. I also ate a lot of TV dinners...man, no wonder my childhood food memories are hazy.

However, I remember eating a lot of "good" instant noodle things in Taiwan. Mmm mm. They come in real bowls! Not cups!

I haven't had these kinds of noodles in ages, but now I want some. Ahhh, what have you done to me?!

The Papa Bear said...

The instant noodles in bowls, instead of cups, have appeared in the US for, I think, about 10 years now. I wondered who started that trend, but I recalled that, back then, I had the Korean-made ones.

When I was growing up, we just had the ramen-block in plastic bags. I used to love to munch on the dry noodles.

Kevin said...

I love ramen - the miso ramen I had at the Ramen Museum in Shin-Yokohama was amazing. I just wish they sold instant ramen of that kind here. The only thing I see around in bowls is instant udon - and even then, I'd rather go prepare yude udon or something. =X

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